Global Demand for Pallets to Exceed 5 Billion Units
February 28, 2014 | 8:19 pm UTC

Cleveland, OH - Global sales of pallets are projected to climb 5.0 percent annually through 2017 to 5.1 billion units, an acceleration from the relatively sluggish pace of the 2007-2012 period. According to analyst Zoe Biller, “Pickup in manufacturing activity will spur across-the-board gains, especially in large, mature regional markets such as North America and Western Europe.” Demand will advance 6.8 percent per annum in value terms to $51.6 billion in 2017, stimulated by increases in unit sales, as well as by a shift in the product mix toward higher-priced plastic pallets. The number of pallets in use will expand at a 4.6 percent annual rate through 2017 to 9.9 billion. Stock growth will be fueled by a larger global economy requiring more pallets to accommodate greater shipping requirements, as well as increased utilization of pallets in developing markets. These and other trends are presented in World Pallets, a new study from The Freedonia Group, Inc., a Cleveland-based industry market research firm.

In industrializing countries, pallet utilization is typically low relative to the size of their manufacturing, warehousing, and construction sectors. Going forward, greater numbers of potential pallet users will strive to become more competitive on a global scale by improving operating efficiencies and reducing product damage in shipments through the use of pallets. The Asia/Pacific region, led by China, will post the strongest unit sales increases of any regional market, averaging 8.1 percent per year through 2017. This region will also overtake North America to become the largest regional market by 2017, when it will account for one-third of the global total. Sales advances across the region will be spurred by climbing manufacturing activity and increased adoption of pallets by new users. China will experience the largest gains of any national market in the world and will account for over one-fifth of total global unit demand in 2017.

The vast majority of pallets are constructed using wood or plastic. Demand for plastic pallets will grow the fastest of any product type in most national markets through 2017. Plastic pallets can be easily cleaned, lending themselves to use with food, beverages, and other products where contamination must be minimized. They also last for many years and are resistant to damage during normal use. Additionally, their recyclability and ability to be made from recycled materials will be attractive to users seeking to raise the perceived environmental friendliness of their operations. However, because of their low cost, wood pallets will continue to dominate product sales in most areas, representing more than nine-tenths of 2017 global unit demand.

 

                                                                                                                                                 

WORLD PALLET DEMAND

(million units)

 

% Annual Growth

Item     

2007

2012

2017

2007-

2012

2012-

2017

 

 

 

 

 

 

Pallet Demand

3690

3980

5070

1.5

5.0

North America

1356

1290

1540

-1.0

3.6

Western Europe

1100

1000

1150

-1.9

2.8

Asia/Pacific

724

1125

1660

9.2

8.1

Central & South America

134

149

192

2.1

5.2

Eastern Europe

248

261

326

1.0

4.5

Africa/Mideast

128

155

202

3.9

5.4

 

 

 

 

 

 

 © 2014 by The Freedonia Group, Inc.

World Pallets (published 02/2014, 357 pages) is available for $6100 from The Freedonia Group, Inc.  For further details or to arrange an interview with the analyst, please contact Corinne Gangloff by phone 440.684.9600440.684.9600 or e-mail [email protected] Information may also be obtained through www.freedoniagroup.com.

Source: The Freedonia Group

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